My Lifestyle by Addison Crowl
It is time for me to be honest with myself. I am in love with someone that is considered taboo. I have kept this relationship relatively close to heart some people know but most don’t. It is time to say it I am in love with…. Stand Up Comedy…. wow, that was hard to say.
Now some say, “true love can only be between a Man and a Woman”. I don’t care. This thing is what I LOVE. We have been going strong for 10 months now and if you disapprove of this relationship, too bad, hate to break it to you we have been (read in whisper tone) doing the dirty. Since this is first most of you have heard of this I am sure there are question and hopefully they will be answered here.
The first time I had really heard of Stand Up Comedy I was in 7th grade. I had seen it before, but this was the moment that I felt a connection that I couldn’t shake. It was Eddie Izzard “Dress to Kill” special. I was so captivated by a man in a dress telling jokes about things that fascinated him. I stayed up late to watch it over and over again. Which then lead me to watch all of his other specials. I didn’t care about girls then I just cared about comedy, but sadly, comedy had no idea who I was.
I moved on to High School and comedy started to slip from my sight. I started to look at girls instead, flirting with them, trying to kiss them, and trying to sleep with them. It wasn’t until my senior year, when I was single, that comedy became my love. I found new comedians like Lewis Black, George Carlin and many others. I never cracked jokes in class or tried to bring attention to myself with my wit. My anxiety was too strong I have a horrible time talking to people I didn’t know, so I stayed mostly silent listening to people. Listening to classmate make other classmates laugh. Seeing what is funny and what isn’t still comedy had no idea who I was.
I went on to college in Chicago where I studied architecture. Comedy was there but I put it on the back burner, so I could make friends and battle my anxiety. Because of this I was able to meet some of my best friends. My second year I was back full force on the comedy. I was watching any sitcom I could and had Comedy Central playing 24/7, it was great. It got better when I found the thing that really pushed me, Hannibal Buress. Once I found him I realized, “hey, you can do Stand Up in Chicago?” “NO WAY THAT IS CRAZY”. I finished my second year of school by scraping by with a D. Slowly I was realizing that architecture wasn’t really for me and by the beginning of my third year it was clear that architecture wasn’t for me. I stopped going to my classes and I started becoming more depressed (oh, yeah I kind of been dealing with depression my whole life). It had gotten to the point where I had planned my death. The plan was there was a construction site about a mile from where I lived, they had a 50 foot crane that I was going to climb up at 3 am Sunday night and just drop. It was that simple some might believe that it would have been impossible to do that but I disagree. I had visited that construction late at night before I had snuck on and climbed the crane before. Something about falling to death had been peaceful in my mind. I stopped myself an hour before because I worried about a friend. That night my friend received a call from her mother drunk that had never happened to her so both she and I were seeing the worst. I made a decision that day that my friend could not lose both her mother and a friend. So I told my parents about what I had planned and started going to Psychologist. I feel like this really says something about me in that if you are my friend I will put your priorities over mine because friends make your life better. A couple of weeks later guess what? Yeah, I got on a stage and told my first joke.
My first time on stage was at the Comedy Sportz open mic called the Chaser about two years ago. There were only comedians in the room and 30 people went up. You had three minutes to do your set and there was a TV that had a clock that would count down. It was nerve racking and I did a set about my balls, it was ok, for a first time, but for the first time I felt like I was at home. The most important thing of that moment was that was the day comedy knew who I was. I am sure comedy looked at me and thought “look at that hot stuff come back again, maybe we will talk.” I only went there 3 times the anxiety of talking with new people got the best of me. I dropped out of school at the end of that semester. I came home and thought thats the end of stand up, there is no way I can do it in Wilmington.
Then Nutt Street came into my life. I had no idea it existed until my parents had me read about it in the paper. It took me a couple of months of being home before I attempted to perform at Nutt Street. I think I looked at the site 50 time during those months. My anxiety was getting the best of me but one day I beat it and I got on that stage. It felt fantastic, I felt more at home here than the Chaser. I did terrible, but thats ok, getting on the stage that was important and the lovely comedy saw me again. I didn’t go very often, I was too afraid and uncomfortable. Ten months ago is when I decided that I was going to do this every week. I was going to grab comedy by the shoulders and tell it “hey baby, we are doing this, we are going to make this work, we are in a relationship.” This has been the best decision of my life, I have never been happier.
After all this what does this mean to you? Well, this isn’t a hobby, this isn’t a “comedy thing”, this is a lifestyle choice that I will do until I die. Yes, you will be see me post “hey come to my show” or “hey come see my buddies show” because there are many fantastic comedians in the Wilmington area. This is going to happen, all the time, deal with it. I haven’t been posting these because I felt my comedy wasn’t good enough for you to know, but now I feel it is. This is the happiest I have ever felt and I just want to spread the joy. This is my coming out.
Addison Crowl was born in Washington DC lived in the area for 8 years then his parents moved down to Wilmington. He graduated from Hoggard High School. Attended College in Chicago to study architecture where he first got his feet wet in stand up comedy. Then dropped out cause that is what cool kids do. Now has been dedicated to Stand up since December 2012. He is willing to talk about anything as everything is fair game in his eyes.